Legislators face deadline for bills as session nears halfway point

CARSON CITY — The eighth week of the Nevada Legislature kicks off with lawmakers approaching the halfway mark in their 120-day session. Monday is the deadline for committees to introduce bills, and about 250 bill introductions are anticipated.

Also on Monday, the Senate will convene as a Committee of the Whole so the entire body can be briefed on Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval’s $5.8 billion budget proposal.

It’s a prelude to the budget showdown yet to play out when committees begin closing agency account budgets early next month.

Assembly and Senate money subcommittees continue their review of K-12 funding on Monday, while the Assembly Judiciary committees hear testimony on AB178, which would impose additional fees on tickets to boxing matches to establish a fund to help pay the medical expenses of retired boxers.

The Senate Committee on Commerce, Labor and Energy will consider two bills dealing with workers and unemployment. SB332 would eliminate a requirement to pay workers overtime wages for hours worked in excess of eight hours in one day. The bill would retain overtime for hours exceeding 40 in a week.

SB369, would establish a shared-work unemployment compensation program. It would allow employers to reduce the hours of workers who otherwise would be laid off in tough times. Those workers then would receive unemployment compensation for the hours they were cut.

The Assembly Government Affairs Committee will take up AB386 to limit restrictions local governments can place on solar and wind energy projects.

The Senate Health and Human Services Committee considers creating a statewide alert system for missing older people, similar to the Amber Alert system.

On Tuesday, money sub­committees hold a work session on mental health and developmental services budgets, while the Senate Judiciary Committee takes up foreclosure deficiency judgments and tougher penalties for graffiti.

The Senate Committee on Legislative Operations and Elections will hear testimony on Senate Joint Resolution 1, a proposal by the Nevada Youth Legislature to allow a state lottery, currently banned by Nevada’s Constitution.

Wednesday, the Assembly Judiciary Committee considers three separate bills dealing with concealed weapons and another, AB185, involving allowing weapons in state parks.

The Senate Finance Committee hears SB220, establishing the Kenny C. Guinn Memorial Millennium Scholarship.

Mobile home parks will be discussed in the Assembly Commerce and Labor Committee when it considers AB429. The bill would require mobile home park landlords to pay moving costs for tenants if rent prices increase 40 percent or more within five consecutive years.

Senate Natural Resources will consider SB226, banning some kinds of trapping of animals in urban areas; and Senate Joint Resolution 3, which urges the federal government to convey more land to the state as school trust land. The program dates back to statehood and was intended as a way to help states fund education.

On Thursday, one Assembly Ways and Means and Senate Finance subcommittee holds a work session on prisons, the Department of Public Safety and the Division of Parole and Probation. Another joint subcommittee will continue work on the Department of Education budget.

The Senate Commerce Labor and Energy Committee will consider SB329, which would require doctors to include on prescriptions the symptom or purpose for which the medication is being prescribed.

Hunters would be able to pay more for a guaranteed deer tag under AB347, to be considered Thursday by the Assembly Committee on Natural Resources, Mining and Agriculture Committee.

Under the bill, 450 deer tags would be available for Nevada residents on a first-come-first-serve basis for $500 each. Another 50 would be reserved for out-of-state hunters, at a cost of $3,850 per tag. Proceeds would be used for predator control and to improve deer habitat.

Subcommittees will hold a hearing Thursday afternoon at Lawlor Events Center on the University of Nevada, Reno campus to receive more public testimony on higher education budgets.

That same night, joint Senate and Assembly Legislative Operations and Elections committees will hold a hearing at the same place on redistricting.

On Friday, the Senate Judiciary Committee considers bills on concealed weapons.

The Senate Commerce, Labor and Energy Committee hears testimony on SB331, which would prohibit housing discrimination based on sexual orientation or transgender identity.

Another bill, SB352, deals with retaliation by employers against workers who exercise certain rights or report labor violations; and SB328 would exempt creative professionals from laws governing overtime.

The Legislative Operations and Elections committees from both chambers will cap the week off with a redistricting hearing Saturday in Las Vegas.

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